I got a surprise this week. I’d been keeping tabs on the new version of Eudora, which is based on the Thunderbird email program from the Mozilla Foundation along with the user interface from the Eudora program that I have used for years.
It just got released as Eudora OSE (Eudora Open Source Edition). I had tried one of the beta versions, but it was too early and it didn’t really do all the functions I needed. Or, if it did, I didn’t realize it during my limited testing.
This week, long-time subscriber Clif Sipe wrote to let me know that the new version had finally been released as Eudora OSE v1.0:
Hi Terry, have you tried this version yet?
I know you are a long-time Eudora fan.
NEW – Eudora OSE v1.0
via SnapFiles latest freeware additions and updates on 11/10/10
Eudora OSE is an open source email client that combines Mozilla's Thunderbird with code, features, and GUI elements from the classic Eudora email program. It offers the familiar Eudora interface….
That was all I needed. I immediately downloaded it and started the installation.
Installation was easy to do. However, my email folders are huge and I’ve got a lot of them. The process of importing my folders, filters and personalities (Eudora let’s you set up multiple email ID’s with each having its own SMTP and POP3/IMAP servers) took an extremely long time. Long enough that I let it run in background while I used Firefox to surf the web.
And run, and run, for a long time… Perhaps 30-45 minutes. However, it seems to have done a good job importing the settings.
The new Eudora OSE is not the old Eudora email program with updates, fixes and modifications. It is an entirely different program. It is based on the open-source Thunderbird email program from the Mozilla Foundation, with a new user interface (the Eudora user interface) applied over Thunderbird.
So, Eudora OSE has almost all the user interface functions of the Eudora that I’ve used for years, but with some neat new features, too. Some of these are probably customization updates to the Eudora interface. Many are undoubtedly driven by the structure of Thunderbird.
I’ve got almost all of my email functions working at this point. My multiple accounts work just fine.
The only real shortfall at this point, from my point of view, is that Eudora OSE is choking on the response from my secure POP3 email server (when I make a connection with SSL security). The old Eudora understood it just fine and it worked.
The error message looks like this:
As the result, this means that my email connection when I log into the mailserver for my mail is not encrypted. With the old Eudora, the user ID and password as well as all the inbound emails were encrypted between my computer and the mailserver.
Is that a big problem? Probably not. That’s the way almost everyone’s email works, as very few ISP’s offer SSL connections for either inbound or outbound email. Unlike a web browser’s secure HTTPS connection that protects your UserID, Password and data, email normally is not encrypted — which means all of that is sent "in the clear" and is subject to being sniffed by other users when you have an unencrypted wireless connection.
Remember, when you check your email at the coffee shop, etc., you normally don’t have to get and set an encryption password for your wireless connection — that means that your email user ID, password and all the email contents are going to be transmitted in the clear.
What’s my opinion on Eudora OSE?
I’m not quite ready to make the shift completely. But, since yesterday, I’ve used it exclusively. As a precaution, though, I have my email accounts in Eudora OSE set to "Leave messages on server." That way, they stay available until I download them later into my old Eudora installation.
How much does Eudora OSE cost? It’s FREE!
This article was written in 2010 – Eudora OSE does not appear to have been updated since then. It was based on a version of Thunderbird. In 2012, I recommend using Thunderbird instead of Eudora OSE.